On Friday at the Democratic Party Hall of Fame dinner, democratic presidential candidates gave fierce speeches addressing key issues facing the nation and next year’s presidential election. Two speakers stood out with sensational speeches targeting the key issue of income inequality. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders separately weighed in on the subject, both seeming to use it as the centerfold of focus for the speech. The candidates spoke strongly in favor of an increase in the national minimum wage and an equality of pay for women. While both candidates addressed the income inequality issue, Bernie Sanders seemed to stand out in a passionate display going as far as to demand “Political revolution.”
Clinton gave a brief speech of less than twenty minutes in which she seemed to keenly focus on issues of income inequality but most particularly the wages of female workers. Clinton didn’t elaborate as to what type of policies she would implement to combat these problems, but instead she seemed make it an inspirational speech.
I am running for you, we are going to build an America where we don’t leave anyone out or anyone behind, where if you work hard you will do your part and get ahead, and where a father can tell his daughter, you can do anything you want you can even be President of the United States!
Clinton spoke in broad terms, making statements like “Now we have to choose, whether we are going to return to the failed top down policies that wrecked our economy before, or move forward to charter a stronger, fairer, more prosperous future,” without elaborating as to how she intends to do so. Instead she personalized her message with an emotional anecdote about her mother. Sanders however, seemed to come to the dinner well prepared with an eloquent speech on the full spectrum of issues: income inequality, the circulation of wealth to the billionaire class, the prison system, education, healthcare, and even climate change. Sanders went out of his way to establish his progressive stance on issue after issue as a contingent of supporters yelled, cheered and clinked silverware on glasses to indicate their support for his campaign.
Sanders pledged to make overturning Citizens United a litmus test for any Supreme Court justice he might appoint and warned the decision was pushing the United States towards “an oligarchic form of society.” He vowed to make college free for everyone and told the attendees his table consisted of a group of college students whom have collectively acquired $1 million in student loan debt. He targeted healthcare reform to provide it as a right stating, “There is only one industrialized country in the world that does not guarantee healthcare as a right to its people.” Adding: “Healthcare is a right of all our people.”
He addressed climate change as an issue and declared it our duty to the children of the future to fight it. He spoke about the prison system entrapping nonviolent criminals, and vowed to fund education and job opportunities rather than the prison system, but seemed to keep the center focus on wealth distribution. He vowed to raise the national minimum wage to $15 an hour saying, “America now has more wealth and income inequality than any country today” and said this was the great moral issue of our time. He stated “99 percent of all new income, 99 percent is going to the top 1%.” He seemed to zero in on a fight that has happened for over 100 years to obtain a 40-hour equitable work week rather than being overworked and underpaid. In his well composed, awe inspiring speech Sanders ended with, “These are troubling times, but if we stand together there is no limit to what we can do.”
Featured image captured via YouTube